K vs. L frame holster fit: any difference?


April 17, 2009, 10:01 AM
Is there any difference in holster fit between a K and an L?

I'm looking at a leather holster that is shaped to the profile of the revolver, like this N-frame holster:


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April 17, 2009, 10:46 AM
I just got my Fobus paddle holster for my L frame S&W 581 yesterday and the packaging says it's good for K & L frames and Taurus 65's, 66's, and 431's.

I'd say fobus probably knows what they're talkin about and I imagine K and L frame holsters are interchangeable, depending on barrel length of course.

Good Luck

April 17, 2009, 11:22 AM
There is a difference. :( K-frame is slightly smaller than L-frame as I am sure you know. A well made K-frame leather holster will be too tight for an L-frame. You can stretch it and it makes for a very nice "custom" fit for your L-frame, but after it is stretched, K-frame will feel loose. L-frame holster can be used with K-frame especially if it has a thumb break; the fit is loose but servicable. OT but K-frame holsters fit Ruger Six series revolvers very well.


April 17, 2009, 11:32 AM
I'd agree with hoptob above. I have a holster for a 2.5 inch S&W model 66, and also own a 2.5 inch S&W model 686. The 686 will fit in the holster, but it is a tighter fit than the model 66. So even though holster makers will advertise that their holster handles both K and L frames, in fact the L frames are slightly bigger and will fit more tightly.

April 17, 2009, 11:43 AM
I stand corrected.

So K & L's fit in a L frame holster, but L's don't fit too great in a K frame holster.

April 17, 2009, 02:44 PM
Yep, as hoptob indicated, though K & L Frames share the same grip frame (same trigger reach), the L Frame has a bit more girth than the K, which is plainly obvious when holding them side-by-side.

Though my 686 fits my FIST #20 for a K Frame, I can tell that it would stretch it to the point of becoming useless for my K Frame Model 15. Best to spend the extra dough and get dedicated K and L frame holsters.

April 17, 2009, 09:21 PM
I bought the holster.

Indeed, it's loose on my Model 10.

Damn. The old 10 has nice blue on it still; I don't want to hike around with it rubbing the inside of the holster.

The question is, do I keep the holster or return it?

(Someday, I will end up with a 686, 620, Taurus 66 or GP100, all of which are supposed to fit.)

It's a Triple-K Carry Lite, for $24 new. Not a bad price. But I don't currently own the revolver that fits just right in it.:)

If I keep it, I have an excuse to jump on a 686 if I see a deal on one...:D

tasco 74
April 18, 2009, 06:27 PM
when i bought my bianchi ranger belt and holster set for my s&w model27 n- frame i got a k-l frame holster because i liked how it held it in tighter.... the ranger holster is nylon not leather so that might make a difference.....


April 18, 2009, 08:05 PM
Bianchi still make that design of holster, and make it for the "K" or "L" frames.
As above, the "L" is a bigger frame and a MUCH bigger cylinder.
Buy a holster made for your specific gun:

The Bianchi 5BH:


April 18, 2009, 08:39 PM
dfariswheel, I was looking at the web site you suggested for ArmedBear's revolver. My question: Is a model 64 a K or and L frame?

I have one and like the look of that holester.

April 18, 2009, 08:55 PM
ArmedBear - I'd return it. If you want a K in it, and it's already sloppy, it's going to rub the finish like you said. The dimensional differences in a K/L are 1/8" in each direction - cylinder overall width (diameter) and frame height. A holster that fits an L properly just will not fit a K correctly.

mesinge2, the 64 is a K frame revolver, it is the ss version of the model 10 Military & Police.

April 18, 2009, 09:02 PM
Thanks, Oro.

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